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alfred zacher presents his thoughts on why some president to succeed while others feel during their second terms in office. this is about 45 minutes. >> the afternoon and appreciate you being here for less event -- this event that we can credit c-span2 for being here. we are familiar with the faces phase past is prologue which is amazing on the wall of the national archives. we have heard the phrase history does not repeat itself, it rhymes. this afternoon with your
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assistance, i will attempt to apply the prologue to the history of the second term but i simply do not understand history writing so that one will not be ignored. we are once again facing the challenge selecting our president when the winner is too close to call. we do not expect to witness an election won by a landslide. some will look lonely on the times when one candidate dominated the political theme. lyndon johnson nearly beat barry goldwater and richard nixon overwhelming george mcgovern. in each of those elections on of the candidates failed to capture the spirit of the american voting public and the winner had the advantage of the weak
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opponent. franklin roosevelt won the second term landslide because of his huge popularity. however in many more presidential elections, the candidates are in a battle to present themselves as of one that is capable of serving the country with the winner walking off with a modest majority. in the work of the campaign between the incumbent president and his opponent would be either a referendum on the first term of the president or eighth judgment which candidates would be a better leader. is there a difference between the two considerations? the sinnott baliles giunta judging the leadership skills of the incumbent based on the effectiveness during the first term? this is the unknown and leadership skills of the
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challenger. it's easy to point to the national security or the economic consequential than practice on their ratings of an incumbent is the indicator of the popular view of the sitting president. not chanted with of the war and iraq when george w. bush ran for the reelection against john kerry for the voters by a small margin seemed to believe bush would be the better leader. it cannot be said that the vote reflected the favorable referendum on george of the bush's first term. the importance of the communication skill of the candidate cannot be discounted as a factor, however. but all of this misses a different evaluation that merits being taken into account in the
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incumbent barack obama and his challenger mitt romney. that is the jinx of the second term on so many presidents. only seven of 19 presidents elected to a second term avoided having a troubled or failed second term. that would give the country's 38% chance of obama and the nation experiencing the economic climate if obama is reelected. do not suggest the gamble shouldn't be taken. rather it is playing with politics might give us cause. what is the history project about a second term for barack obama were he free elective with so few presidents having success
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in that time in office. one of the challenges that face those that have troubled or failed the second term and would allow others to succeed and can barack obama overcome these challenges if he is reelected to become a member of that select group of presidents the we did for the quagmire of the second term and somehow came through relatively unscathed? success in the second term doesn't imply that they're one of failures or significant stumbles. some even severe during that then venue but that time in office has the fulfillment of a significant number of the following measures of success. first, the president must provide defense against foreign or domestic threats.
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second of the president must retain or expand economic comfortable and more social opportunities. this becomes the primary challenge that the nation feels secure for a military threat. third, the president must effectively leave congress -- lead congress. since the nation began its been a perennial conflict between the executive and legislative branches of government. most presidents will extend their authority to the outcomes. congress, on either hand, generally seeks to -- limit the president's freedom of action. it's understood however that from time to time setting of such limits may be needed. fourth, the president must employ the spirit of invincibility. it might cause the president to lose touch with the political
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realities. the president must exercise influence over and effectively communicate with the nation to be able to communicate persuasively. six, the majority of the american people must believe in the president's integrity and have substandard substantial level of pride throughout the eight years in office despite out cummings. he must have balance by his actions. the president must leave a legacy to the nation. the list of those in the second term and would george washington, james madison, andrew jackson, theodore roosevelt, dwight eisenhower, rall reagan and bill clinton. lincoln has a special case in the successful second term.
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it's interesting to note that only the president had a more successful second term than the first or james madison and andrew jackson. the following is an accounting of the president elected to the second term and the reason for those are the trouble second term. member for field because of the war that seemed on winnable or for lack of preparedness. jefferson, truman, johnson and bush were the four. also failed because of economic crisis or the failure to act to detour such a crisis and these were jefferson, cleveland, coolidge, franklin roosevelt
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with a 37 downturn and george bush to eight failed due to their inability to leave with jefferson, wilson, truman, johnson, nixon and bush. they failed to to franklin roosevelt and richard nixon. four of them did not effectively communicate this agenda or initiative were jefferson, monroe, grant and cleveland. obviously the dominant source of failure for the second term prudent has been their inability to successfully work with congress, the second term presidents have faced troubled or second terms do directly to the fight between the congress and the white house. having a congressional majority of their own party is no
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assurance of release. those presidents that serve in the congress having the majority of the opposing party during the second term included willson, eisenhower, nixon, ronald reagan and clinton. the competitive battle to the president and congress dates to the site george washington had in the congress over the treaty. he had won approval only after standing considerable efforts looking directly with members of congress compromising and cudgeling and that was with the congress having the majority of white thinking federalists' a president who was revered in a national hero. when the democrats won the majority in congress and the second term eisenhower worked quietly behind the scenes with the senate majority leader lyndon johnson to gain approval in the legislative agenda.
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the legislative goals compromised as they were it might be cynical to postulate some of nixon's the fight rather liberal legislation was prompted by the desire to get along with a democratic controlled congress. woodrow wilson was the target of the republican party that wanted to even media squabble they had with the president. he defeated both william howard taft and theodore roosevelt to win his first term. he still had a liberal legislation opposed in the approval of the league of nations the would be selected in the republican party hostility to wilson. the treaty was never approved and the votes were there for
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approval where the president alone compromise but wilson stood firm. as the president, not the congress that refused to compromise. one of the most successful relationships between the president and the congress occurred in the second administration of the clinton. he had encouraged the democratic party to move more closely to the center vertically well before he ran for president. his legislation reflected that to get his success working with new gingrich and the republicans in formulating the tax reduction legislation that led to the budget surplus is the top stone for success working with the opposing party to fulfill the legislative agenda.
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clinton appointed erskin bowles to represent him in the negotiations in congress. such bargaining was important in reaching the president's legislative agenda. this is followed in this house of representatives voting to impeach bill clinton and obviously an extreme example of the age-old conflict between the congress and the exit of branch of government. yet bill clinton is listed among the seven presidents who were successful. they might offer guidance or he reelected. some of the president's face hostility from the congress feel the majority of their own party in wooded washington, jefferson, monroe, grant, theodore roosevelt, johnson and bush.
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andrew jackson was centered with a congress controlled by its own democratic party like he never forgave. franklin roosevelt had a constraint on had a constant battle with the democrats in congress who opposed his new deal legislation. he severed his greatest political defeat as a democratic controlled congress to support his plan to pass the supreme court. the republican fought the legislation drafted by the fellow republican of ohio who sought to take away the presidential power. the speaker then is all about, however, is what might be from the four years of a second term of barack obama where he recollected barack obama in all probability would face the
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daunting challenge of working with the republican majority in the house and possibly in the senate. what lessons he might have learned where he recollected confronted the congress dominated by republicans further complicating this challenges that the apparent disappearance of compromise which has actually been a mainstay of legislation through the nation's history with one very momentous exception. members of congress and the south wouldn't compromise on the subject of the expansion of slavery, 11 states defeated in the civil war in sudan. we've heard much about the battle between the president and congress over the extension of the bush tax cuts raising the debt limit and the potential of the automatic cuts and spending
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resulting referred to as the fiscal cliff. it was likely the these critical decisions would be given reef extensions the congress would be settled with making the decision. as a second term president, obama would face rarely experienced by the chief executive returned to office where he would face sizable numbers of people in the senate and the house but they would not compromise. they were on the horizon for a second term for obama. other lessons that obama can learn from the experience of the presidential histories that might give guidance to the resolution of this concern. first, however, it would be helpful for the customary
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evaluation. his opponents and some of his supporters had that barack obama have the leadership skills extreme cultural background and temperament to deserve a second term as president of the united states. his opponent saying no to all of the above consider him socialistic, have socialistic tendencies including the designer to copy conditions to the stimulus -- i'm sorry. skipped a page here. >> to desire the copy european government economic policies on the basis for the campaign to
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deny. his party says he compromises and but he party controls the congress and experience in the debt level and other legislations. express concern that he doesn't appear to be a decisive leader in the legislation or the management of the health care proposals. supporters believe the conagra's was given a free rein in the design of the health care plan is the key to destroying by partisanship by independent said that are also disturbed by what they see in the inability to meet and negotiate with republican opposition. there can be no question obama lacked experience in government even as governor or as a long-term member of congress on any phase of the business world.
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further is the background and academics and as a community organizer offers no evidence to someone who has the five-year in his belly to be a leader. he had primarily been a teacher, counselor, adviser and mentor. he had preferred to be very thoughtful before responding to the advice or opinions on matters. he had no experience in the negotiations of the level but was to meet the republican congressional leaders or international heads of state. he had no experience or academic training in either the economic or the complexity of the government will demand. obama had no experience initiating the vital legislation and and structuring the study in the legislation the experience into account obama stepped out
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of character who so aggressively fought the legislature, the united states senator and the president of the united states. obama obviously had to learn all that was required as the president through on-the-job training. it's possible to conclude, however, that observing the legislation past and his first term that obama is a quick learner. it seems that he grappled with the challenges of the economic crisis and the formulation of the stimulus package leaning heavily on his economic advisers. the most appropriate comment on the program is that the nation didn't falter with some economic expansion. the bailout of the automobile industry seems to be a success. the healthcare of legislation
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frequently black presidential leadership in the judgment of most observers and in the configuration is yet to be determined. all of this took place with minimal experience. how well is obama meeting the measures of a successful president? he's probably seen as protecting america with the use of drones and killing osama bin laden and members of al qaeda. the withdrawal from iraq and the plans for the removal from afghanistan is greeted with approval by the majority of americans. at the moment, obama appears to be fulfilling the security for the nation. for all of the rise of the anti-american uprising in the coming of our ambassador in libya, and the success of the taliban and afghanistan has minimally raised the issue of the defense of the nation in
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becoming a legend. he inherited the worst economic crisis since the great depression of the president is now held responsible for the continuation of high unemployment and minimal hope for its improvement and also for increases in the debt and deficit. the jobless issue proposals are not being well received by republicans. the administration has not proposed any innovative resolutions for the severe downturn in housing and some believe he should have supported and promoted simpson-bowles deficit proposal. he hasn't been able to significantly expand economic opportunities. how has obama use the tools of leadership? he intends to communicate a vision and the proposal but he has appeared so often on
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television that overexposure was occurred. he's a capable public speaker but it's frequently lacked the fear that he showed during his first campaign. seems a lack of dramatic communication skills of fdr, ronald reagan or clinton. obama frequently comes across as a teacher as a motivator. he fails to excite and motivate the miss st. although he isn't doing badly in the current campaigns. there was a recent article in the sunday edition of "the new york times" entitled obama please to win in politics and everything else. the author paints a picture of obama that gives a greater insight into him and how he might function as a second term
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president. i am quoting now from that article. four years ago barack obama seems as if he might be a deliberate professor of a leader may be with a touch of hawaiian he has turned out to be a voraciously competitive perfectionist and he says so in interviews. mr. alana's own words praise in say it best. he's a perpetually aspiring overachiever. as he faces off with romney, mr. obama has the will to win and the fear of losing is an overdrive kit you he screening for the debates against an opponent raising money in a frantic pace to narrow the gap in embracing tactics of an
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increasingly contentious campaign. even by the standards of political will mr. obama's expression of virtuosity and giving himself the best those close to him say it's arrogance. when mr. obama was the inseverable overachiever in the early political race his friends were infuriated but even those loyal to mr. obama say that his quest for excellence can bring him to cockiness and you overestimates his ability so what does one predicted a second term for barack obama particularly with these qualities of character? he most recently exhibited the combination of moving to the center while preaching of the
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class warfare targeting the wealthy with more taxes. the speaker of the house john boehner says that he backed away from an agreed compromise on raising the debt limit. an article in "the new york times" magazine tends to support that charge the reason he painted a picture of obama standing firm and the negotiations as the apparent requirement for the resolution of the legislation approaches the end as it appears that even more are being forecast for the next congress if it will take an unusually skillful second term president to deliver solutions to the financial problems facing the nation. if the task rests on the shoulders of barack obama will he emulate wells and who wouldn't compromise or would he like eisenhower? regan, clinton and washington figured out how to win against
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the odds. of course to achieve the accommodation in congress he would need a lyndon johnson, tip o'neill or new gingrich to lead the congress majority that would follow. so what specifically what i recommend that he would do to avoid the challenges of the second term? he should appoint an intermediary with the skills of simpson-bowles to work with the congress on a legislative proposal. he should recommend a creative revision of the tax law and serious debt reduction program and encourage the congress to enact an annual budget which hasn't occurred in the past three years. he might come up with a proposal for the inventor of public-private partnerships to improve infrastructure including the electric grid it and continue to encourage energy
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independence. the resolution of the supplies should be sought but all of this will occur only if the be elected barack obama can find the unique temperament required to work with his administration to move to the center and to discover ways to reach meaningful compromise with the congress willing to pass legislation this country so desperately needs. while it is in the subject and the people one can ask will he be reelected and will he have been reelected to a second term of the popular dividing in the 40% level which is where obama is but so is romney. it's interesting to note that only three of 19 presidents elected to a second term had relatively less popularity ratings and the time as the reelection haditha low popularity ratings of the time of their election.
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these were what rules and, truman and george dalia bush. these presidents experienced troubled or failed second terms. history aside, one cannot discount the possibility that obama would win not based on statistics like this but because the judge him on the best alternative of the two candidates. success is the second term for obama is another matter. thank you. [applause] we would welcome questions. it would be an advantage to c-span to that question and answer period maybe some of you will reply to the questions that come from the audience. we would like you to participate
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and there's a microphone over head. do any of you have questions? yes? >> i thought that was a remarkably objective and even handed and a very insightful. thank you very much. my question is given that the president's opponents in the congress have made no bones about their goal to make him a one-term president, have you seen in your research any other situations that compared to that love all of directness in terms of that kind of goal? >> to follow your saying the plan in the first term to oppose the president extensively so as to deny him a second term. that is a very fair question. i would say that would then require the congress of the
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opposing party where we had those presidents that held their own party in power there would not occur. well, i would think that clinton interestingly enough his center of the road concern that therefore he did get an expected support that congress opposed him wherever they could find all of the investigations. they did everything they could to deny him a second term. i hoped -- wilson suffered some of that but it wasn't until the
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second term that he had a republican congress. and looking back, i think clinton would be an easy answer to that. any other questions? >> yes. >> if the president is free elective what he half years to get anything done before the next election cycle starts? >> does he turn into a lame dhaka? it takes a very high leave regarded president to avoid that the only two presidents had more than a second term than the first because the first two years of the second is the only chance of getting much done. ronald reagan for instance is an exception to that the dow was in
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foreign affairs, not domestic and the lame duck problem occurs pretty much after the rear president who in the last two years of the second term has an effective time. any other questions? >> yes. >> i would like to ask a question about what for wilson. i understand that he wanted to get the league of nations passed. what little i know about the league of nations seems like it would have been a good thing. why wasn't he able to get it passed? was it strictly political? >> his opponent in the party recognized his weakness of demanding that his plans would be accepted so they selected one
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and that is the right of the league the nation's two war to battle and that this -- you notice the united nations didn't have the gift because the league of nations and they said they would redesign the league to ask us to remove that and he refused the republicans knew she was that rigid in his nature. yes. there is a question back there. >> it's entirely possible that
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the barack obama may win the electoral vote and lose the popular votes for the popular vote may be very close. what affect is that likely to have on his performance in the second term? >> the implication is the weakness and it's likely that at best he would have a small majority of the electoral college or the popular vote so that that would add to the congressional republican position that they don't have to cooperate with the man who doesn't have a mandate. the mandate would be one of the bases for the president's po3 bases for the president's power, and that will not exist for him so he will have to depend on
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other devices in line to the point i wish that he would appoint erskin bowles, and i know that he is only an example but there are not many people with skills to handle the negotiation like that and the thing is the word negotiation is correct if it doesn't deny the president his position that is simply tries to work the position giving up pieces of them so that each side has to give up pieces of one is going to give up totally a and if that is the demand, then we are not going to have success. the danger of solving the
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problem rests on a sold do because shoulders of those making these decisions and its greater than the statistics and the power of the president of the time will have possibly less importance. yes? >> we had one president that had more than two terms. is their anything unique about those terms? >> it's interesting that it's thought that washington set the to term limits it was in the constitutional amendment that the fact is that grant wanted a third term and if he didn't have his own party opposing him because they didn't feel he had been a good president but he would have been a big term
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president, and theodore roosevelt if he hadn't said he wasn't going to run again he would have had a third term. your question is roosevelt then became a powerful hugely admired president because of the third term that he needed world war ii and the success he had to make that third term valuable. i've been asked whether or not one time is enough because you have the potential for what we see in places i would say that
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our system is from that point correct but we don't want the third term. thank you. any other questions? >> yes. >> there is a question over there. yes. >> with all the studies that you've done on the characteristics of the current leader, is there a person or a couple of people but today not romney and not obama that you see what have those characteristics to lead the country through? >> and who wants to be president? [laughter] that is needed. i think the office is strange requirement and i did have a
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section in the paper but ideally suited specifically because it is on the second term. but whether or not business is a provincial and i've reviewed the fact that george washington really of all of the presidency is probably more into business than any of the other second term presidents come and lincoln had clients in business and was very effective there that he himself managed his own affairs very well and of course we had hoover who could not communicate with the one months of his policies were adopted by roosevelt, deconstruction, finance corps for one that he couldn't communicate. he couldn't put together leadership skills, and of course
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both truman and grant were huge failures in business, and george h. w. bush it will probably be an example of a president who was very successful in business and an effective administrator but he didn't communicate very well in the public and he lost after his first term, so i would say that i think there were some candidates out there that have the strength of character and this is over the years in the republican and democratic party governor. romney is now a senator from virginia who had a great depth of character who have self-confidence in a quiet set of ways that could have made an
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excellent president but they chose -- they were not able to win in the primary. that's one thing is you could ask of the primaries or better than the old smoke-filled room but they are not equal to that. that is another topic, other question, another paper. any other questions? >> yes. well, thank you very much.
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CSPAN November 18, 2012 11:15pm-12:00am EST

Alfred Zacher Education. (2012) 'Presidential Power in Troubled Second Terms A Historical Look at the Second Term.'

TOPIC FREQUENCY Obama 14, Barack Obama 7, Washington 6, Wilson 5, Jefferson 5, Theodore Roosevelt 4, Mr. Obama 4, Franklin Roosevelt 4, Lyndon Johnson 3, Bill Clinton 3, Johnson 3, Clinton 3, United States 3, Erskin Bowles 2, Gingrich 2, Andrew Jackson 2, Us 2, Truman 2, Afghanistan 2, The Nation 2
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